REPORT & GALLERY: Crawley Wasps 6 QPR Girls Dev’ment 0

Emma Plewa scored a hat-trick against QPR Girls Development in the Women’s FA Cup (Picture: Ben Davidson – www.bendavidsonphotography.co.uk).

Former Wales international Emma Plewa hit a hat-trick as Crawley Wasps reached the second round of the Women’s FA Cup with a 6-0 win over QPR Girls Development on Sunday.

Kemina Webber, Megan Stow and Ariana Fleischman were also on target against the Rs’ youngsters at Tinsley Lane.

It is only the second time in the club’s history that Wasps have reached this stage of the FA Cup, and they have now won all 14 of their games this season.

Against QPR’s teenagers, who play in the division below, Wasps recalled Abbie Measures, Charlie Carter, Fleischman and Webber, and gave 17-year-old Lauren Graves only her second start in goal.

Measures created the first big chance with a cross that Plewa headed wide from eight yards out, while Rangers sent a volley wide from a corner at the other end.

A scrappy Webber goal put Wasps in front on 13 minutes. The centre forward burst into the box and the ball cannoned in off her as a defender attempted to challenge.

Stow shot into the side-netting from Sian Heather’s cutback, before Plewa’s cool finish when through on goal made it 2-0 on 26 minutes.

GALLERY: For more photos from the QPR Girls game, CLICK HERE

Graves comfortably fielded a long-range effort as Rangers threatened only occasionally, and Wasps scored four times in 20 second-half minutes.

Shortly after the break, Plewa latched on to a Stow through ball and rounded R’s keeper Lucie White before slotting in.

White also made saves from Heather’s angle drive and Fleischman’s half volley, but she could o little about Stow’s terrific effort from 25 yards which found the top corner.

Plewa completed her hat-trick in fine style, picking up the ball on the halfway line, burning past a defender and stabbing the ball into low into the far corner.

Fleischman completed the scoring when she snapped up a rebound following Heather’s saved shot.

Wasps: Graves; Measures (Drury), C. Carter, James, Palmer (Niamh Stephenson); Cole, Fleischman; Heather, Stow, Plewa; Webber. Sub not used: Gibbs.

MATCH REPORT: Billericay Town 0 Crawley Wasps 2

Crawley Wasps players celebrate the 2-0 victory at Billericay at the AGP Arena.

Crawley Wasps pulled off a huge 2-0 win away at second-placed Billericay on Sunday to move five points clear at the top of the FA Women’s National League Division One South East.

An often tense game at the AGP Arena was settled by second-half goals from former Wales international Emma Plewa and ex-England Under-23 Naomi Cole.

The victory was their 13th straight win in all competitions and also extended Wasps’ unbeaten run in league matches to 24, dating back to March 2017.

Given the importance of the game to both sides, it was perhaps no surprise that the first half was tight with few clear-cut opportunities. Cole shot just over, while Billericay twice fired just wide after Wasps failed to properly deal with free-kicks.

But Paul Walker’s side took a grip on midfield after the break and were the dominant side for much of the second half. Plewa fired into the side netting and Megan Stow tested keeper Nikita Runnacles, before the crucial breakthrough.

It came on 64 minutes as Plewa beat the offside trap to latch on to Cole’s threaded pass and the winger pulled the trigger.

Cole sealed the victory herself with 10 to play as she took advantage of hesitant defending to slam into an empty net.

Manager Paul Walker said: “It’s an important win, against our title rivals, that keeps us firmly in control of our own destiny in our pursuit of back-to-back promotions.

“There were some outstanding individual performances but topping those was the overall team display – a superb work ethic and desire to get the job done.”

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson, James, Young, Palmer; Drury, Cole; Rabson, Stow, Plewa; Heather (Webber 87). Subs not used: Graves, Measures, C. Carter, Fleischman.

MATCH REPORT: Crawley Wasps 6 Luton Town 0

Megan Stow came on as a second-half substitute and was one of six goalscorers (Picture: Ben Davidson – www.bendavidsonphotography.com)

Prolific Crawley Wasps made it 12 wins from 12 in all competitions this season with a 6-0 demolition of bottom side Luton Town in the FA Women’s National League on Sunday.

They have now scored 35 goals in just seven league games this season, following promotion to the fourth tier of women’s football.

Striker Sian Heather nodded in the opener and skipper Naomi Cole blasted in the second from the penalty spot just before the break.

In the second half, midfielder Ariana Fleischman netted after being set up by Heather, with centre-back Darcey James scoring the fourth when the Hatters failed to clear a corner.

GALLERY: For more photos from the Luton Town game, CLICK HERE.

Substitute Megan Stow then got on the scoresheet for 5-0, with Faye Rabson rounding things off.

The win puts Wasps back on top of Division One South East, two points clear of Billericay with a game in hand.

The two sides meet at Billericay on Sunday.

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson, James, Young (Drury), Palmer; C. Carter, Cole; Rabson, Fleischman (Stow), Plewa; Heather (Davies). Subs not used: Graves, Measures.

MATCH REPORT: Eastbourne Ladies 0 Crawley Wasps 4

Ellie Russell, Lauren Graves and Millie Carter made their Wasps debuts in the County Cup win at Eastbourne.

A much-changed Crawley Wasps side booked their place in the Sussex Women’s Challenge Cup quarter-finals on Sunday with a 4-0 win at Eastbourne LFC.

Ariana Fleischman scored twice, with Suzanne Davies and Jenny Drury also on target, as Wasps secured their 11th consecutive victory in all competitions this season.

Playing against opposition from two leagues below – Eastbourne are in the same division as Wasps’ reserves – the opportunity was taken to rest many of the first-team regulars who have taken the club to the top of the FA Women’s National League Division One South East.

Reserves and Under-18s goalkeeper Lauren Graves, 17, was handed her competitive debut, as were two recent signings from Portsmouth – defender Ellie Russell, 21, and midfielder Millie Carter, 18, the latter from the bench.

Davies, a Wasps stalwart who has largely been used as a substitute this term, made the most of a rare start by opening the scoring from Charlie Carter’s ball.

American midfielder Fleischman doubled the lead before the break and then netted again in the second half, with an effort from the edge of the box.

Substitute Drury got her first goal of the season when she headed in a corner as Wasps eased into a last-eight tie against lower-league Saltdean.

Wasps are back at home in the league this Sunday when they host Luton Town at Tinsley Lane, Oakwood (2pm kick-off).

Wasps: Graves; Measures, Cole, Russell, Ward; C. Carter, Stow; Woollard, Fleischman, Davies; Webber. Subs: Drury, M. Carter, Heather.

MATCH REPORT: Oxford United 1 Crawley Wasps 3 (a.e.t.)

Sian Heather (left) netted at Oxford in extra time, forced by skipper Naomi Cole’s equaliser.

Crawley Wasps recorded their best result of an increasingly impressive season as they won 3-1 at higher-division Oxford United on Sunday to reach the third round of the FA Women’s National League Cup.

Despite numerous chances, Wasps had been within a whisker of elimination as they trailed 1-0 going into injury time, following Sophie Baker’s header early in the second half.

But Naomi Cole’s free kick drifted in to give the visitors a deserved equaliser, and Emma Plewa and Sian Heather both netted in extra time. It means Wasps have now won all 10 games this season.

Oxford – who sit mid table in the FA Women’s National League Premier South – were, on paper, Wasps’ biggest challenge since the Sussex Women’s Challenge Cup final against Lewes in March.

But Paul Walker’s in-form side were not overawed and created the first chance in the opening minutes, with Plewa stabbing wide at the far post from Heather’s cross.

Centre-backs Darcey James and Charlotte Young both had efforts saved by keeper Hannah Cox, before Wasps stopper Frankie Gibbs turned behind Flo Fyfe’s shot.

Faye Rabson and Heather then rolled shots past the post as Wasps continued to threaten before half time, and Rabson forced a good block from Cox just after the break.

But they were dealt a blow after failing to deal with a free kick and Baker’s looping header crept in.

Thales player of the match Young prevented a certain second with a goalline clearance, while at the other end Heather and Plewa both saw shots come back off the same upright.

Young then had a header of her own cleared off the line as it appeared Wasps would be frustrated – until Cole’s late, late free kick.

Then in extra time, Plewa’s shot took a deflection and wrong-footed Cox, before Heather eased the tension by snapping up the rebound after Rabson’s shot was saved.

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson, James, Young, Palmer; Drury (Fleischman 85), Cole; Rabson (Carter 111), Stow, Plewa (Davies 111); Heather. Sub not used: Graves.

MATCH REPORT: Chesham United 0 Crawley Wasps 3

Left-back Rachel Palmer looks to clear her lines in the win at Chesham.

Crawley Wasps reached the first round proper of the Women’s FA Cup for the first time in seven years as they overcame a stubborn Chesham United 3-0 on Sunday.

It took a usually prolific Wasps side 67 minutes to crack the well-drilled and hard-working hosts, who play at an equivalent level of the FA Women’s National League.

But two goals from substitute Emma Plewa and a fortunate third by Megan Stow ensured Wasps a home tie next month against QPR Development.

Paul Walker’s side laboured during an even first half of few chances, the first of which fell to the hosts as a shot was dragged just wide.

Wasps’ best opportunities fell to Charlotte Young, who shot over, and Jenny Drury, who headed straight at keeper Lucia Delves.

They stepped up a gear after the break as Stow’s shot was pushed against the post by Delves, who also saved Rachel Palmer’s free-kick and another Stow effort.

Captain Naomi Cole and former Welsh international Plewa were both introduced from the bench and they combined to break the deadlock. Cole’s through ball sent Plewa through on goal and she checked back on to her right foot before drilling home.

Chesham had a few forays into Wasps territory – keeper Frankie Gibbs got down well to comfortably gather the biggest threat – before the visitors scored twice late on.

First, Plewa gobbled up the rebound after Stow’s shot had been saved and then Stow herself netted, as her cross-cum-shot drifted in at the far post.

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson (Measures 90), James, Carter, Palmer; Young (Cole 58), Drury; Fleischman (Plewa 64), Stow, Rabson; Heather.

MATCH REPORT: Crawley Wasps 5 Actonians 0

Darcey James (5) rises to head in Wasps’ third goal against Actonians (Picture: Dave Burt – www.daveburtphotography.co.uk).

Crawley Wasps produced arguably their most complete team performance of an incredible start to their maiden FA Women’s National League season as they beat third-placed Actonians 5-0 on Wednesday.

The victory made it six wins from six following promotion – eight in eight in all competitions – and stretched their unbeaten league run to 22 matches, dating back to March 2017.

Prolific Wasps have now scored 40 goals in their eight games this season – but it was defence that proved the best form of attack against Actonians, with three of the back four all on target.

Full-back Rachel Palmer opened the scoring on 13 minutes. Actonians keeper Paige Horsnell had raced out to deny Faye Rabson but the ball broke for Palmer in the left channel and she showed great composure to clip a shot in at the far post.

Wasps dominated the first half, with Megan Stow forcing an excellent diving save by Horsnell, Kemina Webber and Stow both striking the post and Charlotte Young’s header blocked in the goalmouth.

GALLERY: For more photos from the Actonians game, CLICK HERE

Stow, though, was not to be denied a third time as she was the beneficiary of a glorious defence-splitting pass from captain Naomi Cole and her midfield partner fired into the corner.

Actonians – considered among the top sides in the division – carried more of a threat after the break but Darcey James nodded in Cole’s corner on the hour mark to stretch the Wasps lead.

Rabson scored the fourth as she cracked in a shot from the edge of the box, while Wasps hit the woodwork twice more and Horsnell kept out Suzanne Davies and Sian Heather late on.

But she was beaten by Young’s injury-time header, which was adjudged to have crossed the line despite Actonians’ protests, as Wasps completed another fine result.

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson, James, Young, Palmer; Drury (Carter 64), Cole; Heather, Stow, Rabson (Fleischman 71); Webber (Davies 64). Subs not used: Graves, Measures.

MATCH REPORT: Denham United 1 Crawley Wasps 3

Wasps boss Paul Walker: “The league is our priority.” (Picture: Michael Hulf)

Crawley Wasps boss Paul Walker wants the town to get behind his red-hot team in their latest home league game on Wednesday after securing an FA Cup victory.

Goals from Naomi Cole, Kemina Webber and Faye Rabson gave Wasps a 3-1 win at FA Women’s National League South East rivals Denham United to set up a third-qualifying round tie at Chesham.

But rather than bask in the glory of their seventh win in seven games this season, Walker immediately switched his attentions to the visit of promotion rivals Actonians (kick-off 7.45pm).

And he’s hoping for a repeat of the 100-plus crowd who turned up to Oakwood FC last month and inspired a 5-2 win over AFC Wimbledon.

“The league is our priority so securing three points against a good Actonians side is our focus,” said Walker.

Kemina Webber headed a crucial second goal (Picture: Ben Walker)

“I’m expecting a competitive game on Wednesday and if we can have the intensity that we did in the Wimbledon game, with a bit of a crowd behind us, then hopefully we can come out the right end of that.”

At Denham, former England Under-23 international Cole – who had seen an earlier effort cannon off the post and the keeper – put Wasps in front with a smart volley after collecting a poor clearance.

In the second half, Megan Stow curled narrowly wide before Webber jumped to beat the keeper to Cole’s inswinging corner.

Rabson made it 3-0 with a crisp finish having collected Stow’s pass and slipped inside a defender.

Denham pulled one back from a corner but Wasps remained on top, with Sian Heather firing wide and hitting the post late on.

Wasps: Gibbs; Measures (Niamh Stephenson), Carter, Young (Fleischman), Palmer; Drury, Cole; Heather, Stow, Rabson; Webber (Davies). Sub not used: Graves.

MATCH REPORT: Stevenage 2 Crawley Wasps 7

Defender Charlotte Young was named player of the match at Stevenage by Simon Wallace, from sponsors Bunaken Oasis Dive Resort.

Crawley Wasps’ prolific start to their first FA Women’s National League campaign continued on Sunday with a 7-2 victory at Stevenage.

It means Wasps have now won their opening five league games in Division One South East, scoring 24 goals in the process.

Having beaten Norwich 6-0 and AFC Wimbledon 5-2 in the previous few days, Wasps’ latest rout was started by Sian Heather as they raced into a 4-1 lead by half-time.

Kemina Webber fired in on the turn, via the under side of the bar, to double the visitors’ advantage before Faye Rabson pounced on a stray ball in a crowded box and slotted home.

Megan Stow then finished an excellent move after making an intelligent run through the defence, with Nicole Emmings pulling one back for the hosts.

Sian Heather was particularly impressive in the first half at Stevenage (Picture: @laythy29 on Twitter)

Stow grabbed the fifth shortly after the break, while substitute Suzanne Davies fired into the top corner following an exchange of passing with Webber.

Wasps skipper Naomi Cole added the seventh, although Emmings reduced the damage for Stevenage slightly late on.

“We spurned several chances before we scored our first goal,” manager Paul Walker said.

“Sometimes we over-played in the final third but we kept the ball well and played some nice football.”

Wasps are in Women’s FA Cup action this Sunday (September 23) away to league rivals Denham United.

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson (Measures 18), James, Young, Palmer; Carter, Cole; Heather, Stow (Drury 60), Rabson (Davies 55); Webber.

MATCH REPORT: Crawley Wasps 5 AFC Wimbledon 2

Sian Heather got Wasps back on terms against AFC Wimbledon (Picture: Ben Davidson Photography)

Crawley Wasps recovered from an early setback to impressively sweep aside AFC Wimbledon 5-2 on Wednesday night and make it four wins from four in the FA Women’s National League.

Visitors Wimbledon took a fourth-minute lead but, after Sian Heather’s equaliser, wingers Emma Plewa and Faye Rabson both scored twice for Wasps in a thrilling second half.

There was also a penalty apiece – one missed by Wasps’ Naomi Cole, the other scored by Dons’ captain Jess Trimnell – as the crowd at Tinsley Lane, Oakwood got their money’s worth.

Wasps fell behind when Caroline Bisson got clear and fired in at the near post and, having not won from a losing position in almost two years, the omens were not good – particularly when keeper Frankie Gibbs had to prevent a second with a fingertip save.

But Wasps settled into the match, creating a series of half chances, before Heather pulled them level midway through the half, outmuscling a defender and firing in low from the edge of the box.

Gibbs made a good low save early in the second half, a crucial intervention – because Wasps immediately stung the Dons with two quick goals, both of individual brilliance.

GALLERY: More photos from the AFC Wimbledon game will follow.

First, former Wales international Plewa’s dazzling footwork took her away from one defender and a burst of pace beat another before she shot low into the far corner.

Then Rabson collected Stow’s pass 35 yards out and steamed round the outside of her marker, shrugging off a challenge in the box to curl a left-footed effort beyond keeper Chanell Yardley.

Another looked likely when Heather was sent sprawling by Yardley, only for Cole to sky the penalty over the bar.

That was only a temporary reprieve as Rabson and Heather’s work on the right teed up Plewa to make it 4-1, but Dons reduced the deficit through Trimnell’s spot-kick after Gibbs clipped Bisson.

Rabson ensured there was no nervy finish, though, as she went on another incisive run, this time on the left, before drawing the keeper and tucking the ball away.

Wasps: Gibbs; Niamh Stephenson, James, Young, Palmer (Measures 86); Drury (Carter 77), Cole; Rabson, Stow, Plewa (Webber 73); Heather. Sub not used: Samain, Davies.